Errwood Hall and Shining Tor

Lovely day yesterday, walking with Lady Hughes and Ziggy.┬áDone this one a few times over the years but it’s still a favourite.

Starting at Goyt Reservoir we walked up to the ruins of Errwood Hall. This was originally owned by a wealthy Manchester businessman, but it was eventually passed down to two sisters who never had any children of their own so it fell into disrepair when the family line fizzled out.

Up on a neighbouring hill is the family plot – at least they have great views.

Walking across to Foxlow Edge we followed the path to the Spanish Shrine. This looks a bit like Hagrid’s cottage (Harry Potter) but it was built for the family’s Spanish governess who was a catholic. She would ride up to pray. Going inside, there are pictures and prayers from people today, so it’s still in use – more than can be said of the hall.

We then climbed up to Pym’s Chair and turned right up the ridge to Cat’s Tor and then Shining Tor. In the distance could see a solitary paraglider drifting around the summit.

Shining Tor isn’t a big hill but it’s the highest point in Cheshire, with great views of the Peak District and Manchester in the distance. We named our media company after it as it’s fairly local and we just lied the name – in fact we officially registered it yesterday, so this trip was quite apt.

From the top, we walked across and back down towards the Reservoir and a well-earned ice-cream in the car park.

Chris

Manchester: A Week After the Bomb

This Bank Holiday Monday was exactly one week since the Manchester Arena bomb that killed 22 people and injured many more.

Lady Hughes and myself had arranged to go into town with friends a while back, and this was the first time I had been into Manchester since the bomb. I was curious what the mood would be and I was also keen to visit St Anne’s Square and pay my respects.

Getting off the bus in Piccadilly I was pleased to see that it was business as usual. Children were playing in the fountains, getting soaked and upsetting their parents, who would now have to take them into Primark to buy them some dry clothes – we did the same when our lads were smaller.

The Northern Quarter was still busy and bustling, but there were signs and street art showing their support for the victims and a desire to stand strong.

Walking through the streets, we found the police cordon very much still in force but people and the police were smiling and helpful in directing us around it.

We quickly visited Manchester Cathedral, lit a candle and signed the book of condolences before heading off to St Anne’s Square where all the flowers and messages were laid out.

The atmosphere here was very subdued and respectful, with people slowly shuffling around the square, reading the messages and taking it all in. I felt a bit self-conscious taking pictures, so I didn’t take too many.

There were police with machine guns standing around but they were chatting with people and looked relaxed. The media were still present but were keeping themselves to one end near the church.

It was quite sombre and emotional as you would expect, especially when you read some of the many messages, but still very colourful and vibrant with all the flowers and balloons.

On the way out back we past the entrance to a tattoo parlour where they were doing bee tattoos to raise money for the charity fund. One week later and people were still queuing down the stairs.

Liam Gallagher played a benefit gig in Manchester yesterday and he said, “normal business has been resumed“. Walking round Manchester, I think he might be right. We’re not knocked down, but we not forgetting either.

Chris Hughes